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Saturday, September 23, 2006

How I dared to be bare

NUDISM is not about sex, honest. I've been told this by at least 20 people at Pacific Sun Friends, a nudist camp on the Sunshine Coast. After two days here, I've watched as a lot of mostly middle-aged naked people play minigolf, take nature walks, sunbathe or sit around chatting.

I'm assured that sex is not on anyone's mind and that true nudists take their clothes off to feel free, shed the trappings of the material world and liberate themselves of society's hang-ups. So why can't I stop thinking about sex? If there's a deviant impostor in their midst, it's me.

I daren't tell my hosts; they'd be disappointed. Pacific Sun Friends is owned by James and Jan Bishop. Both 60, they've been nudists for 30 years and nicer people you'd be hard-pressed to find. For them, nudism is about living a more peaceful existence.

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Monday, September 18, 2006

Nude Britannia, 84% of Brits would buy a home next door to naturists
The great heatwave of 2006 may already seem like a distant memory, but as the summer draws to a close, a new survey by property website reveals that millions of Britons have been stripping off completely on terraces, balconies and in gardens all over the UK.

A startling 19.7% of respondents say they have got their kit off outside while at home on at least one occasion, equivalent to around 11 million people. The figures also suggest people are not going to great lengths to ensure nobody sees them, with 21% saying that they have caught their neighbours in the altogether at some point.

Those in metropolitan areas are more likely than those outside cities to sunbathe nude (21% compared to 16%). It seems that even though rural homes may be more secluded, city dwellers are less likely to know their neighbours and a greater feeling of anonymity seems to lower metropolitan inhibitions.

It would appear that traditional British stuffiness is diminishing as the findings reveal Brits to be fairly relaxed about the possibility of having naked neighbours. When asked if they would be put off buying a house with nudists next door, 50% said they would have 'no concern at all', while 34% said they wouldn't mind as long as they did not have to see their neighbours naked. Only 16% said they would not want to buy a home in these circumstances.

While 29% said they would be embarrassed to talk to their neighbours once they had encountered them topping up their tan in the nude, 57% said it would make no difference at all to their neighbourly relations (and a further 10% said they had no contact at all with their neighbours anyway). An especially friendly 4% said it would enhance their relationship with those next door.

Younger people were less likely to have concerns than older people. 59% of the under 45s would have 'no concern at all' in buying a home next to naturists compared to only 41% of over 45s and 50% for the overall average.

Warren Bright, chief executive of said: "It seems that the Brits' traditional prudishness is a thing of the past. The vast majority of homeowners are fine with neighbourhood nudity. What upsets people far more is noise and antisocial behaviour. A quiet neighbourhood is a big draw to the vast majority of buyers, whether the neighbours are clothed or otherwise."

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